Friday, May 6, 2011

Arizona Redistricting update

Clear as mud, as they say.  On the agenda for this afternoon's IRC executive session only meeting, this sentence seemed a little awkward -- "Discussion and consultation with the Commission's designated representatives regarding negotiations associated with responses to the RFPs."

Bladine said interim legal counsel Jim Barton advised the sentence means the Commission expects to consult with someone from the State Procurement Office about the legal services RFPs.

So, in this afternoon's meeting, the Commission will try to agree on language to finalize the mapping services RFP and will discuss the legal services RFP.  At the next public meeting, they will get information on two more legal services bidders.

According to the May 10 public meeting agenda State Procurement officials will recommend consideration of another law firm.  There was a question as to whether the additional bidder had submitted a complete response before the deadline. 

In addition to the additional bidder, state Solicitor General David Cole, a former Maricopa County Superior Court judge and professor at the Phoenix College of Law, is on the agenda to make a presentation in hopes

The Arizona Eagletarian has learned the names of the firms currently under consideration to provide legal services to the Commission.  They are:
  • Calderon Law Offices, PLC (notably, Ernest Calderon, member, Arizona Board of Regents)
  • Osborne Maledon PA (former AZ Solicitor General Mary O'Grady now is a member of this firm)
  • Dimilante Clark LLP
  • Gammage & Burnham (Lisa Hauser, who served as Republican counsel to the first IRC is a member of this firm)
  • A. David Braun, Attorney at Law (a Democrat who, in 2001 sued the first IRC regarding Congressional district boundaries)
  • Mandell Law Firm (Michael Mandell, counsel to the Arizona Senate Democratic caucus).
  • Gordon & Rees LLP  (Republican former state Rep. Steve Tully is managing partner in the Phoenix office.  A few months ago, Tully sued the panel screening IRC commissioner applicants on behalf of Arizona's Republican Congressional delegation seeking to disqualify Paul Bender from consideration for the fifth commissioner position)
  • Snell & Wilmer
  • Ballard Spahr LLP  (Joe Kanefield, former asst AG, former counsel to the Arizona Secretary of State and currently counsel to Gov. Brewer will go to work for Ballard Spahr this month) 
The question of whether to hire two firms (one Democrat and one Republican) or only one is still unresolved. 
    In other news, Deputy Exec. Dir. Kristina Gomez started with the IRC this week; and today the Commission begins moving into its Evans House offices. Phones should be activated and staff up and running at the new location within days.


    1. Hi Steve, good to meet you, a fellow blogger reporting on political events/issues. I'm testing your comments section. Glad you're covering the AIRC, even here in Tucson.

    2. Thanks Carolyn, I was glad to meet you also.